The Two Mikes

The Two Mikes
Ever wanted to talk with someone about a book you just read? You could just join a book group and talk about it, drink a little, veer off on tangents, work back around to the book again, and finally wrap it up by picking the next book.

But what happens when the book you just read is about about hungry zombies or a haunted house, and your Eat, Pray, Love–reading friends aren’t really into reading it, much less discussing its finer points? That’s what we’re here for. We Two Mikes will be your virtual book group for discussing new and interesting and old and half-forgotten horror books.

If you want to follow along with us, look at the next forbidden book on the table and start reading.

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Episode 108: Move Under Ground by Nick Mamatas

The Two Mikes jump into their beat-up convertible and hit the road with Nick Mamatas and his book Move Under Ground.   They find out the Old Ones are horrible driving companions and those Beat dudes are a bit ripe so ya got to leave the top down.


The Exterminator 

1 1/2 shots of green Chartreuse
1 1/2 shots of white rum, high proof

Place in shaker with ice, shake, strain in martini glass, garnish with a green cherry

Chin Chin

Music: Ants on Parade by The Homosexuals


The Far Stairs said...

Hey, Mikes! It's Jesse Livingston again. Great job on this episode. It's one of the best you've done so far, IMO. I really liked Mike's question about why Lovecraft has such staying power in our age. Here's my answer:

Lovecraft invented modern fear. He taught people how to be afraid in the Information Age. We have so much information about the universe now, it overwhelms our sanity. Just turning on your computer and going online feels like opening an eldritch tome of madness.

Lovecraft took humanity's fear out of the realm of superstition and pushed it into the realm of scientific fact. When we only had mysticism and religion, we could still believe that the world was created for us, even if there were great evil forces trying to destroy us. "Evil" at least implies intention. Now we know for a scientific certainty that we're incredibly insignificant in the grand scheme of things. The forces out there have no agency or intention; they will destroy us without even knowing we exist.

Mike was exactly right when he talked about hyper-objects: Cthulhu = climate change, Nyarlathotep = terrorism, Azathoth = nuclear weapons or viral pandemics, etc. (I made those comparisons pretty randomly, so there are probably better ones to be made.)

Where does this lead us? Well, either to nihilism or existentialism, depending on how optimistic you're feeling. We still create our own meaning in our lives, but we have to be aware that our lives can be snuffed out in a heartbeat by some colossal force that not only doesn't care but isn't even aware of us. Hooray!

I loved the comparison between the Beat Poets and the Old Ones. That was sheer genius. Also, I'm really excited you're doing The Atrocity Archive next. I think that's my favorite piece of Lovecraftian fiction not written by Lovecraft.

Keep it up! Necronomipod forever!


lrobhubbard said...

Lovecraft Country is actually by Matt Ruff - and probably worth an episode down the line. The upcoming Mamatas book is I AM PROVIDENCE (Aug. 2016).

Mamatas also co-wrote (with Brian Keeene) THE DAMNED HIGHWAY:FEAR AND LOATHING IN ARKHAM, a mash-up of Lovecraft and Hunter S. Thompson.

lrobhubbard said...

Alan Moore's current series PROVIDENCE, a deconstruction/examination of the Lovecraft Mythos, might also be worth a discussion - a 12 book series that should be finishing up later in the year (Issue 8 due this month).

Also Victor LaValle's THE BALLAD OF BLACK TOM.

Actually, if you do another themed block, LOVECRAFT COUNTRY and BALLAD OF BLACK TOM deal with the racism aspect of Lovecraft upfront. Another addition would be Mat Johnson's PYM, a bounce off of AT THE MOUNTAINS OF MADNESS and Poe's THE NARRATIVE OF ARTHUR GORDON PYM.